Day 180 – Awards Ceremony

A week or so a go I attended an award ceremony for HM Coastguard where my husband was presented with an award by the Chief Coastguard for Meritorious service. I was asked to take photos. This was a real challenge, the venue was small and crowded – outside was bright sunshine overlooking the sea, inside there was a large doom ceiling letting in sunlight, a pretty sparkly chandler and pink spot lights!! The uniform of the Coastguard is dark suits with white shirts and they obviously all wanted photos of the occasion.

I made the decision before hand to use flash on TTL, but I used a bracket to set it off camera to one side, I had hoped to use a tripod for the formal shots, and I took it with me – but there was not room in the room. I asked where the presentation was going to take place and was shown, so i set my camera up for the light level there, and was ready … the presentations began to a different spot, I had my 17-70mm lens, which meant I could shoot fairly wide and close, but there was also a table full of drinks in the way and there was no way they could be moved once they started talking. I also realised I needed to use manual mode so had to set my shutter speed to work with the flash!

Some of my favorite shots from the evening are here:

ISO800, F5, 1/250 sec - 50mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO800, F5, 1/250 sec – 50mm focal length – Manual mode

This is the Chief Coastguard reading out one of the certificates.

PhotoChallenge- Commendation-8965-1This is my hubby receiving his award. It was scary to think they were looking at me before they moved onto the next shot… and next to me was a journalist from the local paper with a point and shoot camera.

ISO400, F8, 1/250 sec - 38mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO400, F8, 1/250 sec – 38mm focal length – Manual mode

I like capturing candid shots … something that earlier in the year was not in my comfort zone, but here I had been asked to take photos. This photo is the chief coastguard talking to the town major with a special police constable in shot. It shows agencies working together, something the coastguard teams are keen to capture.

ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec - 17mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec – 17mm focal length – Manual mode

These are some of the most important guests there – the wives of some of the serving coastguard, they had just got into a group for a posed shot, I saw the momement and captured it.

ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec - 28mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec – 28mm focal length – Manual mode

The Coastguards talking together… you can see in this one how the pink lights are lighting up the wall beyond yet with the flash I have managed to make the team members shirts white… as you get further away from the camera my light fulls off.

ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec - 17mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec – 17mm focal length – Manual mode

Just capturing the informal atmosphere. It was a real challenge.

ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec - 17mm focal length - Manual mode
ISO400, F5, 1/250 sec – 17mm focal length – Manual mode

I like this photo are my eye is drawn to the young lady in the right looking towards the camera. Her smile lights up to picture.

A montage of the presentation
A montage of the presentation

These are the formal shots – 10 coastguard officers all awarded a terrific, I did not get to choose the backdrop… but I am pleased I got a reasonable photo of them all.  The other photos I took of the evening I put into a photo album online and I have shared them with the team… so it will be interesting to see if anyone buys one.

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